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Fri Nov 15, 2019, 01:37 AM

Bolivia's interim president's indigenous-free cabinet heightens polarization

Rightwing Christian Jeanine Áñez vows to ‘pacify’ country
Disrespect for indigenous Wiphala flag stokes outrage

Dan Collyns in La Paz

Thu 14 Nov 2019 15.38 EST

Bolivia’s controversial new interim president has unveiled a new cabinet which critics say could further increase polarization in the country still deeply split over the ousting of her predecessor, Evo Morales.

To the applause of military top brass, lawmakers and senators, Jeanine Áñez vowed to “reconstruct democracy” and “pacify the country” at a late-night ceremony in the “Palacio Quemado” (Burnt Palace) presidential building.

“We want to be a democratic tool of inclusion and unity,” said the 52-year-old religious conservative, sitting at a table bearing a huge open Bible and crucifix.

But the transitional cabinet sworn into office on Wednesday night did not include a single indigenous person, in a country where at least 40% of the population belongs to one of 36 indigenous groups.

. . .

Speaking to journalists, Áñez’s new interior minister, Arturo Murillo, vowed to “hunt down” his predecessor Juan Ramón Quintana, a prominent Morales ally, stoking fears of a witch-hunt against members the previous administration.


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Reply Bolivia's interim president's indigenous-free cabinet heightens polarization (Original post)
Judi Lynn Nov 2019 OP
ArizonaLib Nov 2019 #1
dware Nov 2019 #2
ArizonaLib Nov 2019 #3
dware Nov 2019 #4
Judi Lynn Nov 2019 #5

Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2019, 03:13 PM

1. These countries should find a way to outlaw US involvement

in their governments and economies.

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Response to ArizonaLib (Reply #1)

Fri Nov 15, 2019, 04:42 PM

2. Do you know for a fact that the US is involved in Bolivia?

After all, Morales did violate the Bolivian Constitution and the OAS did find irregularities in the voting.

Unless there is proof of US involvement, this seems more like a popular people's uprising against a man who wanted to hang on to power no matter what the Constitution said.

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Response to dware (Reply #2)

Fri Nov 15, 2019, 04:52 PM

3. I know you are not asking because you want to know

Your other comments to the articles suggest you are set on your positions that you are 'up to speed on CIA activities'... and so on.

YOU have a nice day.

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Response to ArizonaLib (Reply #3)

Fri Nov 15, 2019, 04:54 PM

4. I do want to know,

if you have evidence, please post it so all can see, my mind is not closed to compelling evidence,

You have a nice day also.

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Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2019, 11:42 PM

5. What a shame we can't find information on US intervention in Bolivia.

DU'ers do remember, since we discussed it well here when it happened, that US Ambassador Phillip Goldberg asked a U.S. Fulbright Scholar to spy on Cuban and Venezuelans in Bolivia and report their names to him, and the young man knew it was wrong and reported it.

MARCH 12, 2008
Recruiting Spies in the Peace Corps
Washington’s blunder in Bolivia strains relations with the Morales government


In February, allegations surfaced that the U.S. embassy in La Paz, located in western Bolivia, has been asking Peace Corps volunteers and Fulbright scholars to provide intelligence information to the U.S. embassy about foreign nationals in Bolivia.

“It flies in the face of what the Fulbright program is all about,” says John Alexander van Schaick, 23, a Fulbright scholar from Rutgers University, who says that last year, an embassy official instructed him to report on Venezuelans and Cubans living and working in Bolivia. “We’re supposed to be here to help with mutual understanding, not intelligence operations.”

This allegation, along with a similar incident involving Peace Corps volunteers, has again called into question the U.S. role in Bolivia, testing the thickness of the ice under its feet here in the heart of the Andes.

Anatomy of a scandal
On Nov. 5, 2007, van Schaick entered the U.S. embassy in La Paz for a routine orientation in preparation for his year-long fellowship in Bolivia. After meeting with various cultural affairs officials, the 2006 Rutgers grad met with Assistant Regional Security Adviser Vincent Cooper.

“He said that he was going to give me a ‘scaled-down’ version of the normal briefing given to U.S. embassy employees,” says van Schaick. According to the scholar, Cooper explained that although Fulbright participants are not U.S. government employees, the embassy likes to keep them “under its wing.”

The meeting consisted mainly of helpful tips for the newcomer–heed caution while on public transportation, steer clear of street protests and respond appropriately in medical emergencies.

“But the part that made my ears perk up was when he casually said, ‘Alex, if, when you are out in the field, should you encounter any Venezuelans or Cubans like field workers or doctors,’ that I should report to the U.S. embassy with their names and where they live,” van Schaick explains.


~ ~ ~

1964 Bolivian coup d'état

. . .

After the Coup
As Estenssoro with his US supported economic policies had alienated radical miners, and with his third term other MNR politicians, former MNR leaders Lechin and Guevara supported the coup, with Guevara becoming the Foreign Minister in 1967.

One week after the coup Barrientos demanded that miner and worker militias surrender the weapons that they had had since the Revolution of April 9, 1952. Prolonged conflicts with miners followed. In order to reduces the losses of state-owned mines, miner's salaries were reduced by 50%. César Lora, leader of the miners from Siglo XX mines, was killed on July 29, 1965.[3] By the end on 1965 a united leftist opposition People’s Democratic Council was formed.[4]

Barrientos lacked sufficient authority to have himself quickly elected President, so on May 7, 1965 he announced indefinite postponement of September elections and concentrated on eliminating his leftist opponents. He sent troops to take over state owned mines of COMIBOL and deported his former supporter Juan Lechin. The armed clashes with miners created an open split between Barrientos and Ovando, who withdrew troops from some of the occupied mines. On May 26, 1965 Ovando was installed as co-President and commander in chief of armed forces along with Barrientos in an effort to prevent split in the ruling junta and armed forces between leftist and rightist elements.[5]

During 1966 Barrientos received covert financial aid from the USA, which was caused by the fact that public office holders had to resign from their office 180 days before the elections. Barrientos followed this rule and this left him without means to pursue an election campaign. During this time Ovando was the President of Bolivia. [6] Elections were held in July 1966, and Barrientos, as the Presidential candidate of the Front of the Bolivian Revolution won with 67% of vote and was officially inaugurated on August 6, 1966.

United States involvement
The officially released data shows, that covert USA expenditures in Bolivia between fiscal year 1963 and fiscal year 1965 were as follows: fiscal year 1963— $337,063; fiscal year 1964—$545,342; and fiscal year 1965—$287,978. Most of it went to support the center and right wings of the ruling MNR party.[7]

Already after the coup, CIA allegedly contributed 600,000 USD to Barrientos election campaign in 1966 and Gulf Oil Corp. donated additional 460,000 USD between 1966-69.[8]


~ ~ ~

Who doesn't know about US friendly, dictator Hugo Banzer?

President of Bolivia
In 1970, in Bolivia, when then-President Juan Jose Torres nationalized Gulf Oil properties and tin mines owned by US interests, and tried to establish friendly relations with Cuba and the Soviet Union, he was playing with fire. The coup to overthrow Torres, led by US-trained officer and Gulf Oil beneficiary Hugo Banzer, had direct support from Washington. When Banzer's forces had a breakdown in radio communications, US Air Force radio was placed at their disposal. Once in power, Banzer began a reign of terror. Schools were shut down as hotbeds of political subversive activity. Within two years, 2,000 people were arrested and tortured without trial. As in Paraguay, Argentina and Brazil, the native Indians were ordered off their land and deprived of tribal identity. Tens-of-thousands of white South Africans were enticed to immigrate with promises of the land stolen from the Indians, with a goal of creating a white Bolivia. When Catholic clergy tried to aid the Indians, the regime, with CIA help, launched terrorist attacks against them, and this "Banzer Plan" became a model for similar anti-Catholic actions throughout Latin America.


~ ~ ~

US Coup Plot to Oust Bolivia’s Evo Morales

by Stephen Lendman (stephenlendman.org – Home – Stephen Lendman)

The late William Blum documented how Washington toppled numerous sovereign governments, assassinated legitimate leaders, and removed others by coup d’etats.

Along with endless wars of aggression and by other means against nations threatening no one, that’s what US hegemonic rage for unchallenged global dominance is all about.

Nations unwilling to subordinate their sovereign rights to US interests are on its target list for regime change.

Blum explained that US policies are “worse than (most people) imagine” or understand. They include virtually every form of lawlessness in pursuit of its geopolitical aims — notably aggression, economic terrorism, pressure, bullying, intimidation, and manipulating foreign elections.

When their outcomes elect or reelect the “wrong” leaders, they’re targeted for removal by foul means.


~ ~ ~

Stephen Zunes
Professor of Politics and Coordinator of Middle Eastern Studies at the University of San Francisco

U.S. Intervention in Bolivia
10/23/2008 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

The alleged support by the United States of wealthy landowners, business leaders, and their organizations tied to the violent uprising in eastern Bolivia has led U.S. Ambassador Philip Goldberg’s expulsion from La Paz and the South American government’s demands that the United States stop backing the illegitimate rebellion. Goldberg had met with some of these right-wing oppositionist leaders just a week before the most recent outbreak of violence against the democratically elected government of Evo Morales, who won a recall referendum in August with over 67% of the popular vote.

U.S. subversion has assumed several forms since the leftist indigenous leader became president in 2005. For example, the U.S. embassy — in violation of American law — repeatedly asked Peace Corps volunteers, as well as an American Fulbright scholar, to engage in espionage, according to news reports.

. . .

When leftist army officer Juan José Torres came to power in October of 1970, the Nixon administration called for his ousting. When an attempted coup by rightist general Hugo Bánzer Suárez was threatened by a breakdown in the plotters’ radio communications, the U.S. Air Force made their radio communications available to them. Though this first attempted takeover was crushed, Bánzer was able to seize power by August of the following year in a bloody uprising, also with apparent U.S. support. Thousands of suspected leftists were executed in subsequent years.

The United States largely supported Bánzer and subsequent dictators in the face of a series of protests, general strikes and other largely nonviolent pro-democracy uprisings, which eventually led to the end of military rule by 1982 and the coming to office of the left-leaning president Hernán Siles Zuazo. The United States refused to resume economic aid, however, until the government enacted strict neoliberal austerity measures.

. . .

The apparent triumph of the neoliberal model of globalization in the early 1990s and the resulting hegemonic domination by the United States over poorer countries — for which Bolivia served as the prototype 40 years earlier — made it appear as if the days of cruder forms of U.S. interventionism in Latin America were a thing of the past.

Recent events in Bolivia, however, may be a frightening indication that this is no longer the case.


~ ~ ~

Documents prove U.S. government involvement in 1971 Bolivia coup
By Heather Benno Jul 10, 2010

The United States has a long history of undermining democratic pro-people’s movements across Latin America. In its quest to protect its interests in the region, the United States has spared no tactic. It has sent arms to right-wing militias, provided funding to topple elected governments,and planted spies and instigators disguised as humanitarian aid workers. According to recently released State Department documents, Bolivia has been no exception.

Recently declassified U.S. State Department documents reveal that the U.S. government worked with Bolivia’s right wing to engineer a coup that installed Hugo Banzer as dictator in 1971. The coup was also supported by fascist Falange militias. The fighting lasted three days, leaving over 100 dead and 600 wounded. It ushered in a period of ruthless repression, during which 90 percent of the people lived in poverty while the ruling elites controlled billions in foreign investment. The United States funded the CIA to support the coup plotters.

After the Banzer coup the United States immediately denied all involvement, but the Washington Post published an article one week later with the headline “U.S. Major Played Role in Bolivian Coup D’ Etat,” and reporting that “conversations here make it clear that a U.S. Airforce Major” served as a military advisor to the coup participants who were training in Santa Cruz. The State Department immediately denied the report.

The recently released documents belie the State Department’s claim. An August 19, 1971, National Security Council memorandum described the military support the United States had provided the coup plotters. The memorandum predicted that a “coup attempt [was] about to get underway in Bolivia,” and suggested that “f this incident does blow up publicly, we will, of course, deny it.” (National Archives) Prior discussions addressed the “White House request that the CIA come up with a political action program to arrest the leftward trend of the Torres regime in volatile Bolivia. …”


ETC., ETC., ETC., ETC..........

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